Some got six months, some got one solid.
Some got one solid, yes indeedy
Some got six month some got one solid.
But me and my buddies all got lifetime here
I wrote a letter I mailed in the air,
Mailed it on the air indeedy
I wrote a letter I mailed in the air.
You may know by that I've got a friend somewhere
In the fall of 1969, I went to a party in my hometown at the home of Jerry Goldman, a sort of friend a year older or so than me. Jerry was considered to be the black sheep of his family and my folks told to stay away from him. It was one of the first times that I got stoned on herb and Jerry told me that I should listen closely to the album he would play. It was the first Grateful Dead LP, self-titled & released in 1967. I hadn’t heard much of the Dead at this point, just a couple of songs in passing on FM radio. I remember being blown away by this album and thinking that I should check out more of their albums. It has become a favorite of mine ever since. The above song closes out this album and it is a cover song originally written/performed by Noah Lewis & Gus Cannon from the late 1920’s. The song is about two friends who find themselves in jail for live (a solid term). They mail a letter and send it in the air to some friends out there somewhere. The Dead’s version starts out with a stripped down blues/rock groove and slowly gets looser as it evolves. If you are dancing to it, you eventually get lost in the loose, swirling undertow. It builds until the looseness is almost too much, stops and then goes back to the original stripped down groove. When that happens, it feels as if we are having the rug being pulled from under us, standing there falling through feel space with nothing underneath. It feels transcendent. The Dead often played this piece very long from 10 to 20 or 30 minutes versions. It was perfect vehicle for our collective psychedelic experience. I wasn’t really a Deadhead way back when but did appreciate a number of their great songs and occasional concerts I attended throughout the 1970’s. It wasn’t until my late pal Mike Panico twisted my arm a bit and we started to go to Dead and Furthur shows that I jumped on board the bus once again. Since the Pandemic started, I began listening to live Dead shows in chronological order (on Archive.org), starting in 1965, usually one hour a night. I am currently stuck at the end of March of 1972, right before they left for the 1972 European tour. As I’ve gotten to know their songs and jams better, I’ve noticed that they covered many old folk, blues, jugband, soul, r&b, jazz and early rock songs. I’ve been checking out the original versions of many of these songs like “You Win Again” (by Hank Williams), “Big Railroad Blues” (again by Noah Lewis) and many others. The reason I continue to do this is that I need those moments of transcendence to help me feel better in these oft dark times. I love to dance & sing and jump in my kitchen almost every night. Get that heart pumping so I know that I am still alive & kicking. What a long strange trip it’s been, indeedy! - MC Bruce Lee
THE DMG 32nd ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION / IN-STORE SERIES CONTINUES with:
Tuesday, February 7th:
6:30: MARCO CAPPELLI - Solo guitar
7:30: STEPHAN CRUMP - Solo contrabass
8:30: JAMES PAUL NADIEN - Solo drums
Tuesday, February 14th: Love Songs for Valentines’ Day & Blues Song for Mother Earth!
6:30 - STEW CUTLER - Solo Guitar
7:30 - GARY LUCAS - Solo Acoustic Guitar
Tuesday, February 21st:
6:30: NICK FRASER / MAT MANERI / BRANDON LOPEZ - Drums / Viola / Contrabass!
7:30: AARON RUBINSTEIN - Solo Guitar!
8:30: ACTIVE FIELD: NANA FUTAGAWA - El Shamisen / EVAN CAPLINGER - Cello / JOE JORDAN - Oboe / IZZY TANASHIAN - synths / ORCHID McRAE - drums!
Tuesday, February 28th:
6:30: TY CITERMAN / JEN BAKER / SHAYNA DUNKELMAN!
7:30: KYLE MOTL - Solo Contrabass!
8:30: HARMOLODICS Trio with JAMES McKAIN / CALEB DUVAL / JAMES PAUL NADIEN!
THE FOLLOWING CD HAS BEEN DELAYED FOR A WEEK OR SO:
JOHN ZORN with JULIAN LAGE / JORGE ROEDER / KENNY WOLLESEN - New Masada Quartet, Volume Two (Tzadik 8396; USA) We will hopefully have copies in time for next week’s newsletter - 2/10/23.
THIS WEEK’S DYNAMIC DISCS BEGIN WITH A RARE LIMITED EDITION LP:
KEITH TIPPETT GROUP with ELTON DEAN / MARC CHARIG / NICK EVANS / JEFF CLYNE / ROY BABBINGTON / BRYAN SPRING / TREVOR TOMKINS - How Long This Time (British Progressive Jazz; UK) “Featuring the classic KTG frontline of Marc Charig, Nick Evans and Elton Dean with rhythm section appearances by British jazz luminaries Jeff Clyne, Trevor Tomkins, Roy Babbington and Bryan Spring. These six previously unreleased live studio tracks were recorded in January and August of 1970. Three of the compositions here (Thoughts To Geoff, Five After Dawn, and Green & Orange Night Park) would be recorded again for the group's second album 'Dedicated To You, But You Weren't Listening', released the following year. The remaining two numbers have never been issued in any form.” The original studio album, ‘Dedicated to You, but You weren’t Listening’ (from 1970) is one of may favorite avant/progressive albums of all time! Finally getting to hear some live versions of these songs is revelation for me and for any of you seasoned Keith Tippett fan-addicts worldwide! - BLG at DMG
2 LP Set $34 with three sides of music [CD copies sold out, LP copies very limited]
ELTON DEAN / STEVE MILLER / PIP PYLE - Home Brewed (British Progressive Jazz 016STC; UK) Featuring Elton Dean on alto sax, Steve Miller on piano and Pip Pyle on drums & percussion. Recorded in December of 1976 at a private session and mastered by the late, great sonic engineer Mike King. I just (1/31/23) listened to a recently released live & studio recording by the Keith Tippett Group recorded in 1970, the same year that Tippett’s second album was released, ‘Dedicated to You, But You Weren’t Listening’. That studio record is one of my favorite avant-jazz releases of all time,and what stood out for me while listening yesterday was the distinctive sound & soloing by Elton Dean on his saxello. Elton Dean was an integral member of Soft Machine, from their ‘Third’ to ‘Five’ albums. I interviewed Mr. Dean in December of 1975 while I was attending school in London and we’ve become friends ever since. I got to hear him play a half dozen times in London then, a duo set with Ivo Perelman at DMG in the nineties, with Keith Tippett’s Tapestry at FIMAV, with Soft Works at a Canterbury Fest in Seattle and an odd set with Hugh Hopper & Dennis Gonzalez at the Bowery Poetry Club during the blackout in the mid aughts. Keyboardist Steve Miller was the brother of Phil Miller (from Hatfield & National Health) and was a one-time member of Caravan, Delivery & recorded a of double records with Lol Coxhill. Ace Canterbury drummer Pip Pyle was an early member of Gong and founding member of Hatfield & the North & National Health. All three of the musicians have strong (Canterbury), related resumes.
“Molly’s Mild” opens and it has a charming, laid back melody/vibe. It is odd to hear Elton Dean playing so melodically but I do find this piece to be most endearing, even Steve Miller’s piano is restrained yet still inventive. The intensity picks up on “Pilgrim’s Hope”, with strong interplay from all three members of the trio, from simmering to more eruptive freeish soaring, escalating and levitating as the piece unfolds. Pip Pyle has long been one of the best of all British jazz/rock/prog drummers and he sounds superb throughout this disc. His fine propulsive, somewhat funky playing on “Crack Le Whip” is give this piece a great groove, hence both Dean on alto and Miller on piano sound more soulful than usual. There is some especially strong, tight interplay going on here with the alto sax and piano both swirling around one another. The trio slowly gets freer as this piece evolves with some dense waves crashing in the last long section. The last piece, “Tea, Kettle, Stout”, has another sort of low burn, soulful, bluesy sound, something which you wouldn’t expect from Elton Dean yet which is still enchanting in its own way. This is not a regular free/jazz blow-out yet it still has a unique charm of its own. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
DON RENDELL SEXTET with STAN ROBINSON / PETER SHADE / MICHAEL GARRICK / JACK THORNCROFT / TREVOR TOMKINS - The Odysseus Suite (British Progressive Jazz; UK) Live studio session recorded in London in October of 1970. Previously unreleased. Stereophonic sound. Based on Homer's Odyssey. Those already familiar with the classic Lansdowne Recordings 1970 British jazz album Greek Variations & Other Aegean Exercises by Neil Ardley, Don Rendell and Ian Carr will immediately recognize the four compositions on this EP from the closing segment of that collection. The versions included here however, are taken from a separate session recorded around the same time and reveal that Rendell had a grander vision for them than simply to round off a collaborative album. Not only are the tracks here nearly 20 min longer in total than the Lansdowne sessions, they also include two additions to the personnel in Peter Shade on vibes and flute, and Rendell’s colleague from the recently-disbanded Rendell/Carr Quintet, Michael Garrick on piano. Whilst Shade had only just joined the group and along with the Greek Variations quartet of Rendell, Stan Robinson, Jack Thorncroft and Trevor Tompkins would record Rendell’s next album Space Walk, Garrick was about to leave, and indeed this recording represents one of his final recorded performances with Rendell until the pair were reunited (alongside Ian Carr) for the BBC’s Jazz Britannia concert three decades later in 2001.” - website info In my ongoing journey to become an expert on the modern British jazz scene, I’ve acquired dozens of discs from a variety of British jazz players, both known and little-known, over many years. The sixties was an especially dynamic time for the modern British Jazz scene with a number of greats like Tubby Hayes, Joe Harriott, Ronnie Scott, Stan Tracey, Michael Garrick and Don Rendell at the top of the heap. Aside from Michael Garrick, the other aforementioned saxists’ careers began in the fifties. Don Rendell’s first album was released the month I was born (June, 1954) and he went on to record more than twenty albums and eventually passed away in October of 2015 at 89. Starting in 1965, Mr. Rendell co-led a quintet with trumpeter Ian Carr, who split in 1969 to form Nucleus, one of the great UK jazz/rock outfits ever. I have each of the Don Rendell/Ian Carr Quintet records, which I dig but have heard very few of his earlier records. This disc is a live studio session recorded in London in October of 1970. Of the members of the sextet I know well Mr. Rendell, Michael Garrick (great pianist, composer & bandleader) & Trevor Tompkins. The other three players I know very little about: Stan Robinson (with the Francy Boland Orchestra), Peter Shade (also with Michael Garrick) and Jack Thorncroft (both he & Tompkins were the Rendell rhythm team for several albums). ‘The Odysseus Suite’ was composed by Mr. Rendell and was a sextet instead of Rendell’s usual quintet formation. When this music kicks off on “Part 1”, vibesman Peter Shade, plays this great repeating vamp which is doubled up by the piano, with both saxes spiraling around the central saxes. The piece soon slows down for Rendell to play a superb tenor sax which is followed by a lovely flute solo and vibes solo. The interplay between Don Rendell on tenor and Stan Robinson on soprano sax is what makes this sextet so special. The entire suite works well from the beginning to the end and is continuous. Can’t wait to listen again. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CD $17 [back in stock]
PATRICK BRENNAN SONIC OPENINGS with BRIAN GRODER / ROD WILLIAMS / HILLIARD GREENE / MICHAEL TA THOMPSON - Tilting Curvaceous (Clean Feed 613; Portugal) Featuring Patrick Brennan on alto sax & compositions, Brian Groder on trumpet & flugelhorn, Rod Williams on piano, Hilliard Greene on contrabass and Michael TA Thompson on drums. I’ve long admired the playing, composing and bandleading talents of Downtowner Patrick Brennan. He recently played two quartet sets here at DMG with Jason Hwang, Hill Greene & Michael TA Thompson and both were great, his unique composing was a good challenge for his bandmates. This disc was recorded in September of 2021 at Manhattan Sky Studios. His group Sonic Openings has been around for a decade and have four discs out so far, the only member whose been on most of their discs is bassist Hill Greene. Having trumpeter Brian Groder in the frontline is a wise choice since he is an unsung hero both as a trumpet wiz and a composer of note. I know of pianist Rod Williams from his work with David Murray, Cassandra Wilson and Craig Harris. Both rhythm team men, Hill Greene & Michael TA Thompson, are both busy musicians who seem to play with a large number in different projects/bands.
In the liner notes, Mr. Brennan discusses how these pieces are based on a series of cells or groove instances which involve at least two melodic and/or rhythm lines which run concurrently. Hmmmm. Each piece here is called, “Tilting Curvaceous” with a number, 1-14. The first piece does have a couple of interconnected lines coalescing together. The two horns are playing one line while the piano-led rhythm team is playing another tight connected line. On the second piece, Brennan plays a long quirky solo while the trumpet & piano rhythm play a slow repeating pattern underneath. Piece 3 sounds like an early Ornette Coleman quartet jagged line while the piano sets a slower pace below. The frontline has a Ornette/Don Cherry-like freeish intensity. Each piece has a unique structure and/or challenge. Mr. Brennan knows how to balance things by stripping them down to bare essentials without getting too dense or hard to figure out. This disc is one of the best discs of new music I’ve heard. A marvel on several levels. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MICHAEL BYRON - Halcyon Days (Cold Blue Music CB0065; USA) Featuring works for marimbas, xylophones, vibraphones, glockenspiels, tubular bells, maracas, and piano, and composed by Byron in the 70s, this deceptively alluring release sneaks up on you quietly but eventually envelopes you in its lustrous charm like a warm blanket. The majority of these pieces are realized by longtime Byron cohort William Winant, the Winant Percussion Group, and performers Lisa Moore, Vicki Ray, and Aron Kallay. The beautifully minimal “Drifting Music” is an ideal showcase for the Byron/Winant team, as the erstwhile percussionist tenderizes a series of gong-struck tones in an arresting, almost clockwork fashion. Marimbas and hissing background effects smear the nocturnal elegies suffusing “Music of Every Night”, sounds so delicate and strangely made, their natural patinas both subverted and augmented by the touch of beings seemingly more enlightened than us. The lengthy, three-part suite that is “Music of Steady Light” is undoubtedly the album’s highlight, a cascading tumble down a rabbit-hole of infinite vibraphonics whose tones re-imagine a Reichian tableau of percussive sturm und drang that will linger in your ears long after the pieces have concluded. This diaphanous aftereffect is even more telling in its second-part mirror image, this time painted by a glowing fusillade of glockenspiels and tubular bells that are positively radiant, as if Winant and his colleagues have ripped open the heavens to allow the pearlescent manna to rain down upon us like diamonds. Call it post-post-modern classical, nu-age chamber music, or simply a paean to deep listening, this is one of the most beautiful recordings your ears will experience in this or any other year, impeccably played, performed, and produced. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
GUY BARASH // FRANK LONDON / EYAL MAOZ / KATHLEEN SUPOVE / NICK FLYNN - Killdeer (New Focus Recordings 355; USA) Featuring Guy Barash - electronics & composition, Nick Flynn - spoken word, Frank London - trumpet, Eyal Maoz - guitar and Kathleen Supove - piano. In 2014, I reviewed a disc by Downtown composer Guy Barash which was released on the Innova label. If you read my review, you can see how impressed I was by this disc. Mr. Barash is back with a new disc called ‘Killdeer’ and again he is utilizing the poetry/spoken words of Nick Flynn. Here is using the talents of three other Downtown players: Frank London (from the Klezmatics), Eyal Maoz (from Abraxas, Edom & 9Volt) and Kathleen Supove (Dr. Nerve & modern classical pianist par excellence). Mr. Barash has been collaborating with all of these musicians in different settings: the EFG Trio (w/ London & Maoz) and the Guy and Doll Duo (with Ms. Supove). Mr. Barash has also been working with poet/wordsmith Nick Flynn for nearly a decade.
Things begin with “The Space Between Silence and Enough”, an electronic ticking sound is first which is soon followed by circular trumpet lines, eerie piano and subtle electric guitar soon joining in. As the piece evolves, Mr. Barash manipulates the ticking by expanding its sound, the trumpet modestly soloing on top. Nick Flynn’s spoken words are at the center of “Confessional”, while the rest of the quartet weaves selective sounds around his calm voice with those persistent observations. Mr. Flynn often blurs the lines between what we observe and what we think we hear or remember, not unlike our own consciousness. Mr. Barash’s electronics are often subtle yet they often set the mood for what is going on around the words or other instruments. Mr. Flynn discusses Jesus Christ and the way he often acted like a common man, not asking anyone to follow him or wait for his return. The music here often has a solemn vibe with minimal spoken words worthy of consideration. “The King of Fire” has a quietly disorienting feeling, haunting sound effects, lower-case-like trumpet burbling, tinkling piano and somewhat harrowing words. There are no actual solos going here, perhaps just the words are the most consistent sound throughout. The words for the title piece are about a killdeer, a bird or perhaps a metaphorical bird which reminds us that we are more than just thoughts, we don’t just live on air or words but something more substantial. It takes time to grasp what is going on here, we have to settle in while the mood casts its spell and the words make us consider what life is, what we are really made of. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
PAK with RON ANDERSON / STEVE BLANCO / LARRY KWARTOWITZ - Bestial (Nef/Irious Industries 48; USA) PAK features Ron Anderson on guitar & (minimal) voice, Steve Blanco bass, synth & voice and Larry Kwartowitz on drums. I’ve been friends with guitarist/bassist Ron Anderson for nearly forty years, having watched him evolve through being a member or running several bands Rat at Rat R, the Molecules, RonRuins and PAK. Mr. Anderson’s current ongoing band PAK has been around for 20 years and this is their 6th disc. Mr. Anderson played here at DMG in a trio with Tete Lequia on bass and James Paul Nadien on drums recently (1/14/23) and their set was intense, brutal and inspiring. Anderson’s lead guitar playing was especially powerful that night.
PAK are a power trio but they don’t quite sound like any other power trio that I’ve heard. “Attrition” opens with a brooding, throbbing presence, double pedal bass drum(s) fury, a dark, sinister undercurrent similar to “Leng Tch’e” by Naked City. “Repent Recoil” has that stop-on-a-dime ultra-tight, post-punk, dark-metal sound. Pounding, throbbing, intricate and in-your-face! Although this music does have that medium-tempo metal thrashing sound, Anderson keeps things interesting by making the trio go through some challenging changes or hairpin turns. “Chiaroscuro” has a hypnotic, dark, slowed down turbulent sound like slow-dancing while sinking in quicksand. The eerie synth(s) sound especially effective likes ghosts floating in our collective dreams or nightmares. The final song, “Triskaidekaphobia” (fear of the number 13), has a dark, sludge-like groove that I almost feel comforting since after reading about the latest tactics of the right wing knuckleheads in congress, I often feel like I am being overwhelmed by those political monsters. No more! I admit that I really dig this disc as it is a great change of pace and feels like riding on the roller coaster of life itself. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
ONE SMALL STEP with JANNE ERAKER / VEGAR VARDAL / ROGER ARNTZEN - Gol Variations (Clean Feed 610; Portugal) Featuring Vegar Vardal on fiddle & voice, Roger Arntzen on contrabass and Janne Eraker - tap dancing. Norwegian bassist Roger Arntzen came to visit us recently and left us with a new disc. I recall Mr. Arntzen from several bands in the past: Ballrogg, Chrome Hill and In the Country (great Rune Grammofon band with seven discs). I hadn’t heard of Vegar Vårdal before now even though he can be found on some 10 discs so far. Tap dancer Ms. Janne Eraker is certainly a new name for me. I have long admired the art of tap dancing but can only recall one or two sets that I’ve ever encountered in which a tap dancer was used as a musical collaborator. I remember catching Will Gaines tap dancing with Derek Bailey at a Company fest at Tonic in the late 1990’s or early aughts.
This disc was recorded at the Gol Stave Church in the Norwegian Museum of Cultural History in Oslo in June of 2021. This disc is superbly recorded. When it begins, we hear whistling, tapping on something, reverberating contrabass with the sound of the room is an important part of the overall sound. Ms. Eraker’s tap dancing is intense and at the center of the sound. Mr. Vardal’s quirky, oddball (Phil Minton-esque) voice is featured on “Heija” and again fits just right with the crazed tapping and burning contrabass. My first impression was to laugh at the wackiness of this trio’s sound yet I soon realized that what they are doing is much more musical, expressive and unique than other free improv that I usually am listening to. There is a section here when things speed up to a near frenzy making this pretty exciting. The tap dancing here is well-recorded in stereo so that it is moving around in the mix. I really like Mr. Vardal’s voice which is warm, thoughtful, folky and quite charming. Bassist Arntzen also has a thick, droning sound when he bows, his low notes work well with the lower sounds of the Ms. Eraker’s feet dancing on a wooden floor. On the back cover of this disc, it lists Mr. Vardal on fiddle not violin. This makes sense since Vardal does have a folky, warm sound and is not trying to be an improviser of only weird sounds. It sounds like someone (Ms. Eraker) is playing with toys or rubbing a surface on “Yarny”, a most effective sound which matches the folky, eerie fiddle and throbbing distant bass. This long piece is like a journey unfolding with the footsteps making a central pulse, the kind of groove we have while riding on a metaphorical horse. Although I never thought about it, the sound of feet tapping on the floor evokes a variety of images both rhythmically and the feeling of being in motion, whether walking or dancing. I found this disc to be impressive, a nice way to take ourselves into another place in our imagination. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
TURBULENCE ORCHESTRA - Dynamos (Evil Clown 9311; USA) The latest missive from the Evil Clown in-house big band shakes the foundations gloriously, starting off like the slowly lumbering, calculating beast that it is, until the gargantuan soundstage simply swallows up its own field density whole. Naturally directed and lynch-pinned by master clown himself Dave PEK, Turbulence Orchestra’s mammoth sound creations are equal parts bombast, blim, bluster, and bodaciousness. PEK and his sparring partners (Joel Simches, Vance Provey, Bob Moores, Duane Reed and a host of others) wreak a tradition of ecstatic blowfests that summon the legacies of Ayler, Coltrane, Shepp, Roland Kirk, and the Art Ensemble of Chicago, and reunite their legacies in broad strokes which embrace the far-flung fantasies of Sun Ra, London Improvisers Orchestra, and Steve Lacy and Evan Parker’s multi-limbed outfits, lacing the entirety with an energy that is nothing short of interstellar. As usual, the company erect a widescreen piece over a hour in duration, through which their uncountable gaggle of horns, electronic interfaces, and percussive armament storm the countryside. Ten-plus minutes in finds PEK and his compadres reigning in the sonic lava to hesitantly probe about the studio, birthing ideas in bits and pieces, a sensitive move here, a more strident lick there, as atmospheric changes alter the barometric pressure until all hell eventually breaks loose. (The percussive stabs, gongs, and ring modulators buzz about like hornets in the distance.) This battle of the wills continues in varying fashion as our ears are treated to ever-shifting modes of saxophone irradiation, late-night meditative reverie, and explosions of sound that intermittently upset the equilibrium in a series of dazzling tours-de-force. Who knows what aural Evil lurks in the hearts of men? These Clowns do. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
RAINFOREST SPIRITUAL ENSLAVEMENT - Water Witches (Hospital Productions 788CD; USA) “Water Witches collects all the early tape and vinyl works of Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement which paved the way to the deforestation of Green Graves. Water Witches includes the following previously released titles which have been meticulously remastered and presented on CD for the first time in this sturdy box set with spot gloss varnish wallets: Fallen Leaves Camouflaged Behind Tropical Flowers, Green Amulet Crafts Supernatural Qualities, Taking Place In The Foyer, Jungle Black Magic And Highlands Green Sorcery, Papua Land Where Spirits Still Rule, Black Magic Cannot Cross Water, The Plant With Many Faces, Folklore Venom, Water Rose Above The Head. Includes digital download code.”
6 CD Box Set $78
LARSEN & ALESSANDRO SCIARAFFA - Golden Leaf (Important Records 523; USA) “Golden Leaf is the 19th album by the Italian experimental band Larsen here exploring free form sounds and spatial dynamics by real time composing and creating a sonic and social environment. It also confirms the love and interest the band has for collaborations as ongoing dialogues and portals to new paths. This album documents a four-hour, site-specific performance by Larsen and Alessandro Sciaraffa featuring interactive sound totems designed by Alessandro Sciaraffa and exclusive food creations by chef Gabriele Gatti. The performance took place at a secret location in Torino (Italy) in 2021 and was meant as an alchemical rite with the audience being an integral part of it. It was recorded and then edited and assembled into two pieces by long-time collaborator, sound engineer, solo musician, Paul Beauchamp. Mastered by James Plotkin. First edition pressing of 300; digipak printed with metallic gold ink.
Since 1995 Larsen, from Torino Italy, has released 18 full-length albums and 4 EPs to critical acclaim. Collaborations with such artists as Johann Johannsson, Michael Gira, Martin Bisi, Lustmord, Deathprod, Nurse With Wound, Z'EV, Baby Dee, Julia Kent, sci-fi icon Christine Schell, plus the project -- a band in itself -- XXL (aka Xiu Xiu Larsen) also stand out on their record. In 2008, legendary dub-diva Little Annie (aka Annie Anxiety Bandez) joined the band as lead singer and lyricist appearing on "La Fever Lit" and "Cool Cruel Mouth" and live on stage on the related tours.
Alessandro Sciaraffa (Torino, 1976) studied architecture, electronic music, and sound design, and specialized at the Karlheinz Stockhausen Foundation For Music in Kurten. He won the ninth edition of Italian Council and is the founder of the experimental music collective WHYOFF. Focusing on sound and its multiple relationships between material, space and time his artistic research expresses itself through performances and the elaboration of installations and sound sculptures.”
HARRY BERTOIA - Hints Of Things To Come (Sonambient 1038; USA) “In 1970, Harry Bertoia had been developing his sonic sculptures for over ten years. He had only been composing/recording for two years and the four long pieces chosen for this CD find him starting to arrive at the sonic forms he had been searching for. Hints Of Things To Come is one of the most unique and melodic pieces discovered so far in the Bertoia tape archive. In this piece, you hear him slowly create and articulate a musical riff. Bertoia builds this phrase patiently until the composition reaches an intense climax where the riff is played heavily and distinctly. "7 ½ 7 ½ Combined", another historic standout, is one of the earliest examples of Bertoia overdubbing by playing a tape and then performing along to the playback. This CD is defined by ambient passages, long drones, gongs that sound like whales, shimmering harmonics and the feeling of an artist searching for sounds deep within his own sonic sculpture.
Harry Bertoia first gained some artistic visibility in the early 1940s, then came into prominence with his sculptural, ergonomic chairs, produced by Knoll Furniture beginning in 1952, which quickly became classics of modernist furniture. Inspired by the resonant sounds emanating from metals as he worked them and encouraged by his brother Oreste, whose passion was music, Harry restored a fieldstone "Pennsylvania Dutch" barn as the home for this experiment in sounding sculptures which he had begun in the late 1950s. Bertoia was an obsessive composer and relentless experimenter, often working late into the night and accumulating hundreds of tapes of his best performances; Oreste, too, would explore and record the sculptures' sounds during his annual visits to his brother's home in rural Pennsylvania. Harry Bertoia's recently dismantled Sonambient barn collection was an attentive listener's paradise full of warm, expressive instruments that were gorgeous visually and audibly. Nothing could prepare you, even on return visits, for the overwhelming experience of entering the spacious wood and plaster interior where gongs, some of them giant, hung among the ranks of standing sculptures of various metals. Over nearly twenty years of adding, culling and rearranging, Bertoia carefully selected nearly 100 harmonious pieces ranging in height from under a foot to more than fifteen feet. He considered this barn a full experience, sights and sounds comprising not a collection of works, but one piece unto itself. It was here, deep in the woods, that his Sonambient recording work took place.”
ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN - Evergreen (Standard Edition)(London Records 5521898; France) “Single-CD edition, the remastered album plus five bonus live tracks (Glastonbury, 1997). In 1997, after a lengthy hiatus, Echo & The Bunnymen returned to the fore with Evergreen, revealing the brighter side of the band, and standing up with any of their earlier work. The self-produced album was recorded at The Doghouse in Henley-On-Thames with additional strings, horns, and vocal arrangements recorded at Abbey Road. The album saw the band rightfully return to the UK album charts at #8, with three singles ("Nothing Lasts Forever", "I Want to Be There (When You Come)", and "Don't Let It Get You Down") entering the UK top 50. "Nothing Lasts Forever" (with backing vocals and tambourine by Liam Gallagher) has grown to become one of the band's most enduring and well-loved songs -- a UK Top 10 and a fan favorite to this day. To celebrate its 25-year anniversary, London Records releases Evergreen.”
MERRELL FANKHAUSER - Goin' Round In My Mind: The Merrell Fankhauser Anthology 1964-1979 (Grapefruit 120CD; UK) "Career anthology of Los Angeles-based musician Merrell Fankhauser described by one pundit as 'the cult artist's cult artist'. Includes his work as a solo performer and fronting such collectable garage rock/psychedelic acts as The Exiles, Fapardokly, HMS Bounty and Mu."
6 CD Box Set $55
ATTENTION ALL CREATIVE MUSICIANS OUT THERE, Around the world.
If you have a link for some music that you are working on and want to share it with the folks who read the DMG Newsletter, please send the link to DMG at DMG@Downtownmusicgallery.com
Loren Connors: A Coming to Shore
January 28–March 25, 2023
Opening 4–7 PM January 28
468 Grand Ave #1D
Brooklyn, NY 11238
Loren Connors /Chris Cochrane Duo (8pm) and
Gabby Fluke-Mogul/Stephen Haynes/James Ilgenfritz - Trio (9pm)
Friday, February 10, 2023
8:00 PM 10:00 PM
Ibeam Brooklyn 168 7th Street Brooklyn, NY, 11215 United States (map)
FROM DAVE MILLER, A fine drummer & longtime DMG Manager:
(The Dancing String)
Marco Cappelli- guitars
Rubin Kodheli - cello
Dave Miller - percussion
Live at Troost!
Monday Feb 6, 2023
1011 Manhattan Ave (Greenpoint)
Brooklyn, NY 11222
G train to Greenpoint Ave. exit north and walk one block.
This one is from CHRIS CUTLER, original member of Henry Cow, Art Bears, News from Babel, respected author and founder of Recommended Records. This is Chris’ wonderful podcast and I urge you all to give it a listen… the new one just popped up today, 7/27/22:
THERE IS A RECENT INTERVIEW with FRED FRITH by Rick Rees that is found here: https://rickrees.substack.com/p/fred-frith-interview . Rick Rees has been working on a website/blog/book/whatever about the great producer/manager/instigator/raconteur Georgio Gomelsky. Gomelsky is someone I’ve long admired and Rees is doing a good job of documenting/interviewing numerous Gomelsky associates. The Fred Frith interview is great and if you are a Frith fan, you should want to know about a number of upcoming projects, tours, etc. This interview showed up in my email during the last hour of my birthday last Sunday and it made me smile. Fred Frith & myself are old friends and he is someone whose music and attitude I really admire. - BLG
AMAZING SERIES OF PODCASTS PUT TOGETHER BY THE GREAT GUITARIST SAMO SALAMON:
The wonderful Slovenian guitarist/composer Samo Salamon has an incredible podcast on Youtube entitled "DR. JAZZ". He has interviewed many of the leading lights of contemporary improvisation including Bill Frisell, Hal Galper, Herb Robertson, Ben Monder, Bob Moses etc. and his conversations are deep and enlightening. Highly recommended for all curious listeners across the worlds of creative music. Here is the link: https://www.bing.com/video
Guitarist and DMG-pal HENRY KAISER has a monthly Video Solo Series on Cuneiform’s Youtube page:
ATTENTION TO ALL DMG CUSTOMERS: NEW EMAIL ADDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org